Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

Science Diplomacy, Italian Style

By Oscar Moze

Scientists should be working with diplomats in matters of foreign policy to resolve present-day global problems.

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It is illusory to think that the resolution of complex global problems such as climate change, food and energy security should be exclusively the responsibility of diplomacy.

Rather, science and diplomacy should be seen as natural allies and instruments for dialogue and change. Scientists should be working in tandem with diplomats in matters of foreign policy where existing scientific knowledge and the outcomes of ongoing research can contribute directly to international understanding and resolution of present-day global problems.

Scientific prowess is a reflection of a nation’s “soft power” status. Medical research and astronomy are two examples of areas where Australia’s scientific leadership enhances its global reputation and influence. Nations – and their scientists – should capitalise upon such advantages by actively engaging in science diplomacy.

International collaboration is also a key for nations to remain competitive and adept in science, research and innovation. Science diplomacy is the perfect tool for promoting and nurturing such collaboration and showcasing a nation’s scientific and technological base.

International cooperation in the field of scientific research and technological innovation has for a long time been considered as a strategic component of Italian foreign policy. Italy’s commitment to active scientific diplomacy...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.